Sometimes your greatest asset is simply your ability to stay with it longer than anyone else.
I believe that many investors will agree with me when I say that persistence is a vital key to your real estate investing success. As Brian Tracy (awesome author – read his books!) indicates, a person’s ability to keep working on something longer than anyone else is often the key to winning as most people quit either before they get started or right as things get hard! One of my favorite uncles refers to this success skill as “sticktoitness” so today I’d like to discuss 5 ways that you can exercise your sticktoitness in 2010 and make persistence pay off for you.
#1: When doing direct mail, don’t mail once. Not even twice or three times. Try 5-6 times.
Well, unless the person calls you to say “leave me alone” or calls you to discuss the property. Then stop mailing them. I mail to the same people repeatedly and can tell you from experience that sometimes it takes people 2 or 3 times before they respond to your mailing. This can be for several reasons. 1 – your mail could be getting lost among the hundreds of other pieces of mail they receive or 2 – at the time they read your mail they aren’t interested….within a month or two something changes and they are ready to talk/sell.
#2: When a homeowner rejects your offer, consider it a temporary no instead of a dead lead
If you have taken the time to screen a seller who calls you, inspect the house, and make an offer, you’ve invested a little time there. If the seller says ‘No way’ to your offer…take that as a “No way, not today!”. Truth is that a seller may change his or her mind in due time. Now depending on what type of no you received, you can follow up one of two ways. If your offer is way off in terms of what the seller was looking for, I’d recommend following up via mail. If the seller seemed pretty motivated but just not quite ready, its worth calling that seller on the phone in a couple months. I’ve heard countless stories of how sellers move from a NO to YES within 6 months.
#3: When your REO offers are rejected, check back in a few weeks
Keep a record of all REO offers you make and continue to check the MLS to see which properties come back on the market or are still waiting to be sold within 3-4 weeks after your offer is rejected. Don’t give up on that property until its showing as CLOSED SALE (not pending sale as many of those fall through). Resubmit offers for the same amount or even less if the list price has dropped over that time.
#4: Make lots of offers
You’re going to get a lot of NOs before you get to a YES when it comes to making offers, whether the offers are to homeowners or banks. This is indeed a numbers game. Don’t be discouraged. Keep making offers. I made 30-40 offers before I snagged one. More offers means more deals. No offers means no deals.
#5: Keep dialing even when people hang up on you
My friend and fellow BiggerPockets contributor Steph Davis recently shared a great story of how persistence paid off for her and she scored a buyer for her latest wholesale deal. In a nutshell, she called a long list of landlords from numbers she wrote down from “For Rent” signs in her farm area. She had to deal with a real jerk on the phone and rather than letting that call take the wind out of her sails, she refused to give up and kept calling those numbers. Wouldn’t you know the 24th call she made (the 24th!!) ended up being the buyer of her wholesale deal. Talk about persistence paying off!
I hope this gives you some solid ideas on how you can get a nice payday from simply sticking to it longer than anyone else. Would love to hear some additional ideas if you have them!
Image credit: Tim Norris